Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Caramelized Onion and Tomato Relish with Chickpea Fritters

A few weeks ago, the kind folks at Robert Rose Inc. offered to send me a copy of the new "cook" book, "Eat Raw, Eat Well" by Douglas McNish. McNish is a Certified Red Seal Professional Vegan Chef, cooking teacher and raw food consultant.

I'm not a big proponent of the raw food diet - which is a diet made up of raw foods, or food that cannot exceed 118 degrees Fahrenheit, if heated - but I am intrigued by its health benefits. With that being said, I was eager to dive into this book and try a few of its recipes - but by putting my own, non-raw twist on them.  

"Eat Raw, Eat Well"  is chocked full of 400 raw recipes for smoothies, sauces, dips, entrees, desserts and salads, and even has tips on stocking a raw food kitchen. Some noteworthy dishes in the book include Coconut Water Strawberry Jam, Avocado Spinach Dip, Basil and Spinach 'Cream' Sauce, and Creamy Ranch Kale Chips. 

My dinner last night was a variation of the book's Caramelized Onion and Cherry Tomato Relish, as well as the Chickpea and Zucchini Fritters.

Caramelized Onion and Grape Tomato Relish
Yields: About 1 cup
Adapted from Eat Raw, Eat Well
-3 tbsp. olive oil, divided
-1 yellow onion, sliced
-1 tbsp. sugar
-1 cup grape tomatoes, sliced
-2 tsp. apple cider vinegar
-Salt and black pepper, to taste

1.) In a saucepan, heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil on medium heat. Add onions, and cook, stirring often, for about 2 minutes. Add sugar, and stir again; let onions cook for about 10-15 minutes, stirring frequently, until onions are translucent, sticky and caramelized.
2.) In a separate saucepan, heat the remaining tablespoon of olive oil over low to medium heat. Add tomatoes, and let cook for about 2-3 minutes, or until they begin to soften. Remove from heat, and add to a bowl with the onions.
3.) Add vinegar, salt and pepper; stir. Let sit in fridge for a half hour to meld flavors.

Chickpea Fritters 
Yields: 6 fritters
Adapted from Eat Raw, Eat Well
-1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
-2 tsp. cumin
-1/2 tsp. turmeric
-1/2 tsp. curry powder
-1 tsp. dried parsley
-1/4 tsp. Ajwain seeds (optional)
-2 tbsp. olive oil
Squirt of lemon juice

1.) Place all ingredients above in a food processor and pulse until mostly smooth. Form chickpea mixture into 6 small patties.
2.) In a frying pan, heat olive oil over medium to high heat. Once hot, place chickpea fritters in the oil and cook on each side for about 2 minutes, or until brown and crispy.
3.) Serve with Caramelized Onion and Tomato Relish.

The onion and tomato relish was a fun condiment for me to make, and something I can use on several dishes over the next few days. The spicy chickpea fritters came out a tad bit dry, but with the relish, it was hard to notice. I loved using this cookbook as an inspiration for my meal, prepared in the way I prefer.

The average retail value in the U.S. for "Eat Raw, Eat Well" is $24.95.

Would you ever switch to a raw food diet? Why or why not?

Disclaimer: Although I received a copy of this book for review, free of charge, the opinions expressed in this post are honest and 100 percent my own.


  1. I don't think I could live on raw foods alone but I can definitely appreciate those who do!

  2. The chickpea fritters look great! I'm not sure if I could ever switch to a raw diet but like you, I find it intriguing!

  3. I could never switch to a raw diet, but I'm also intrigued by the health benefits. I also kind of love discovering new ways of eating/cooking so this book sounds fascinating.

  4. The caramelized onion and tomato relish sounds awesome! I could never switch to a raw food diet, but I think some of the recipes offer interesting possibilities.

  5. I'm very interested in raw food - I ordered lunch from a place called Organic Avenue in NYC that has all raw food. I had sunflower falafel with a cabbage salad and chia seed pudding that was all really tasty! These chickpea fritters look great, and I like the idea of coconut water strawberry jam!